Star Wars: The Last Jedi Trailer Analysis and Breakdown

We've dissected the new Star Wars: The Last Jedi trailer for all of its secrets! Here's what we found...

Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the newest installment in the Sequel Trilogy, is out in just a few short months, which means that the movie’s marketing machine is about to barrage us with tons of new promos. It begins with the second trailer for the film. 

As always, I’ve taken some time to obsess over this brief new look at the movie and dissect it for its secrets. Included in this trailer are clues about the movie’s plot as well as some shocking bits that might very well prove to be red herrings. I found tons of stuff, but if I missed anything, please sound off in the comments section or hit me up on Twitter! Oh, and if you want even more analysis, check out the breakdown for the first trailer.

Before we get cooking, if you haven’t already watched the trailer, you can check it out below:

Done? Okay, here we go:

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The trailer opens with a shot of Kylo Ren looking through a viewport as the First Order prepares its war machine. You can see AT-STs creeping around the interior of a base or ship while AT-ATs are transported on upper left side of the shot. 

Here’s a new shot from the surface of Crait, a new planet that will be introduced in the movie. Crait is a mineral planet that was once home to a Rebel Alliance base during the Galactic Civil War. General Leia decides to once again use the planet as a headquarters, this time for the Resistance. 

It looks like the First Order will be chasing Leia and her band of freedom fighters all over the galaxy. The villains definitely catch up with her on Crait at some point in the movie because a battle ensues. 

By the way, those aren’t your typical AT-ATs. They’re the new All-Terrain MegaCaliber Six (AT-M6), also known as “Gorilla Walker” because of the way its front legs curve in. Pretty cool design. Above the Gorilla Walkers is Kylo Ren’s personal transport, the Upsilon-class command shuttle.

This shot must take place right before the one of the Resistance ski speeders charging into battle from the movie’s first trailer. 

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Kylo marches into battle with a squadron of what look like First Order snowtroopers. It’s unclear what planet this is. The red veins in the rocky ground below seem to indicate that this is an invasion team on Crait. But the cavernous surroundings could also indicate Ahch-To…

The timeline is a little hazy in this next shot of Kylo picking up his lightsaber in what could only be Supreme Leader Snoke’s throne room or something like it. If you look closely, you can see Snoke’s newly introduced Elite Praetorian Guards, who protect the Supreme Leader.

In terms of when this takes place, is this either a flashback of Kylo first accepting his place as the leader of the Knights of Ren or is this the villain completing his training after the events of The Force Awakens? These two trailers have teased that there will be flashbacks in the movie, so this could be one of them. 

This whole time you also hear Andy Serkis’ terrifying voiceover, as he tells Kylo why he chose him as his apprentice. At least that’s what the trailer wants you to think. We know now from later in this trailer that Snoke will finally get his hands on Rey at some point and torture her. Could he be talking to her?

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We finally get to see Rey, and it looks like this is the start of her training with Luke on Ahch-To. She powers up Luke’s old lightsaber as if it were the first time. Rey’s clearly not very comfortable with it. 

Okay, so if you were wondering what happened right after that Rey offered Luke his old lightsaber at the end of The Force Awakens, you won’t have to wait until December to find out. The answer is quite simple: he took it from her. 

Luke is clearly in shock, even a bit confused by Rey’s arrival, as if he didn’t expect her at all. 

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This next shot connects all the way back to a bit of story first introduced in a Marvel comic called Shattered Empire. In the final issue of that miniseries, which takes place right after Return of the Jedi, Luke goes on a mission with Poe Dameron’s mom, Shara Bey, to rescue a Force-sensitive tree from the Empire. 

The heroes end up rescuing two fragments of the tree. One goes with Shara, who takes it back to Yavin IV, where she settles down with her family. Luke takes the other fragment to an undisclosed location. Well, fast forward 30 years, and here we have Rey approaching Luke’s dead Force tree, which might house the mysterious book that was introduced in the movie’s first trailer. Either way, that tree has seen better days.

There’s that shot of books again. Might this be a collection of old Jedi texts? Or perhaps these books make up the Journal of the Whills? The latter guess seems unlikely, but since that text is now canon, I might as well mention it. 

The next few shots are of Rey’s training with a lightsaber and learning to control her Force powers. We get a voiceover from Daisy Ridley where she’s asking Luke for help. You can see Luke is clearly shaken by Rey’s “raw strength.” He says in the trailer that’s he’s seen Rey’s level of power only once before and that he wasn’t scared enough of it before but he is now. Luke is clearly referring to his nephew, Ben Solo, who would become Kylo Ren and destroy his new Jedi Order. 

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Something tells me that Luke is going to be really hesitant to train Rey. It’ll probably take some convincing on Rey’s part. 

Things get a little confusing in this next part. I can’t decide if the bits where Luke is watching that temple burn belong to a flashback or not. More on that in a second. For now, here’s Luke climbing his way out of rubble. I want to say this is after Kylo’s attack on his Jedi temple.

One big clue that this is a flashback is the voiceover that accompanies this shot of Luke watching the temple burn alongside R2. “It didn’t scare me enough then,” Luke says, referring to Kylo’s raw Force abilities. This could just be a red herring, but I’m going to say it’s a flashback to Kylo’s betrayal for now. 

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The focus of the trailer switches between Kylo, Rey, and Luke for the most part. We return to Kylo here, as he once again struggles to let go of his past as Ben Solo and fully embrace the dark side. 

The next few shots are of a space battle between the First Order and the Resistance. This looks like the Resistance’s escape from D’Qar, their home base from The Force Awakens, which was discovered by the First Order.

Kylo pilots his newly introduced TIE silencer during the attack. He approaches Resistance heavy cruiser Raddus, Leia’s flagship. Fun fact: this Resistance ship is named after Admiral Raddus, the Mon Calamari Rebel commander who led the attack on Scarif while Jyn Erso and her team stole the Death Star plans in Rogue One

Kylo has a clear shot at the Raddus‘ control room as Leia waits on to see what his son is going to do. She undoubtedly senses him in the Force and perhaps even reaches out to him. It’s clear that Kylo struggles to kill his mom. Whether Kylo actually shoots or not remains to be seen. My bets are on that he doesn’t…

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One other quick thing I’ll point out about Kylo is that weird metallic strip on his face. It looks like some sort of bandage covering up the scar left behind from his duel with Rey in The Force Awakens. In case you don’t remember, Rey kicked his ass and burned his face with her lightsaber. It’s really weird that he didn’t just stick his head in a bacta tank to heal, but maybe he wants the scars as some sort of memory of his failure because Kylo is so so so angsty.

I can’t say for sure where this Millennium Falcon scene takes place, but perhaps it’s inside the caverns of Crait? Again, I’m going by the red mineral-like veins in the rocks. Does his scene have anything to do with Kylo entering that cavern earlier in the trailer? All I can say for sure is that these shots are GORGEOUS.

Okay, you wanted Ewoks, so you got Porgs. They are a sea bird species native to Ahch-To. I assume that Chewie picked one up during his time at Luke’s hideout.

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More shots from the space battle. This time we get to see a bit of Poe, who is not in his X-Wing during this shot. Did the First Order catch the Resistance by surprise? He eventually does zoom out into space to bring the pain to the bad guys.

Oh man, the rematch we’ve all been waiting for: Finn vs. Captain Phasma. A couple of things to note about their duel. First, this shot of Phasma with her staff is absolutely badass. I’m really glad Rian Johnson found something more interesting to do with the character than The Force Awakens did. 

Then we get our first look at Finn, who is in a… First Order uniform. Finn’s role in the movie has been kept very much under wraps, but some rumors have persisted that he’s going on an undercover mission in The Last Jedi that will take him behind enemy lines. This duel might be the climax of his assignment in what I assume to be a First Order installation on fire. For a brief second, you can see an AT-ST beyond the flames. Could this be the same First Order base from the beginning of the trailer?

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Hoo boy, a couple of new ships in this next shot. The big one is Supreme Leader Snoke’s flagship, the Mega-class Star Destroyer Supremacy. It’s absolutely huge. Then there’s those Resistance fighters in the shot. Those seem to be successors to the Rebellion’s B-Wing fighter.

BB-8! It looks like he’s been hit while riding on Poe’s X-Wing. Oh no! 

Supremacy is also in the background of the shot. You can see smoke rising from the ship’s surface. And on the lower right corner, is that D’Qar? Could it be that Snoke decided to visit the Resistance personally after they blew up his precious Starkiller Base?

Luke’s on the ground in this next shot. Has he been attacked? Whoever his assailant might be, he tells him/her that things aren’t going to go the way he/she thinks. I want to say that Luke and Kylo will come to face in this movie, but then there’s another shot that seems to pertain to this scene that shows Rey approaching Luke in the rain. She’s also gone for a swim to get to him, it looks like. Still Ahch-To I think. 

Another shot of Leia, this time on what looks to be the Resistance base on Crait. And also a new creature we’ve not seen before. I’ll admit that I have no idea what it is. The Last Jedi may be the first time it’s introduced, although it looks vaguely familiar for some reason…

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More shots of undercover Finn and what looks like the same First Order base shown throughout the trailer. Is this perhaps the inside of Supremacy?

Then the BIG moment: we see Supreme Leader Snoke in the flesh for the first time! And he’s torturing Rey!!!!! 

Rey is clearly under a lot of pain. The room she’s in has the same red walls as the one earlier when Kylo picks up his lightsaber. This is probably Snoke’s quarters on Supremacy

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The final two shots are perhaps the most shocking because they seem to tease that Kylo will once again offer Rey his hand. “I need someone to show me my place in all this,” Rey says.

Then the shot of Kylo offering his hand while something burns behind him. I’m not sure that these two shots go together, actually. This is almost certainly another red herring. It almost looks like the Kylo scene pertains to the shots of Luke watching that temple burn, which I thought might be a flashback… but in the Kylo shot, the villain already has his scar. So…I don’t know?

But there you have it. This is a great trailer overall, channeling a much darker installment akin to The Empire Strikes Back. Of course, if The Last Jedi is indeed a more bleak entry, this might mean that not all of the heroes will escape the wrath of the First Order unscathed. We’ll find out soon enough when Star Wars: The Last Jedi premieres on Dec. 15.

John Saavedra is an associate editor at Den of Geek US. Find more of his work on his website. Or just follow him on Twitter.

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